Portugal win in Belgrade and edge closer to a Euro 2020 place
Serbia-Portugal : Euro 2020 qualifying match (Group B)
Portugal take a big step closer to Euro 2020 qualification with a vital 2-4 win in Belgrade.
The defeat will come as a major disappointment for new Serbian boss Ljubisa Tumbakovic who surprised many by leaving Luka Jovic and Lazio's Milinkovic-Savic on the bench.
Goals from Carvalho, Guedes, Ronaldo and Silva for Portugal with Serbia's efforts coming from Milenkovic and a late Mitrovic effort offering a glimmer of hope for a surprisingly quiet crowd at the normally raucous home of Red Star Belgrade.
Portugal now face Luxembourg with Serbia away in Lithuania next week but tonight's Belgrade clash has put the current European champions in pole position to secure an automatic qualifying place with runaway Group B leaders Ukraine.
Portugal secure a 2-4 win and edge closer to a place at Euro 2020.
A hushed silence in the Marakana, a stadium famed for it's boistorous atmosphere as Serbia run out of time and the full time whistle sounds.
Joao Felix wins a corner for his side with the new Atleti signing looking active since his introduction.
Katai tries his luck but fails to trouble Rui Patricio as the clock ticks down on the game and Serbia's hopes of qualifying for Euro 2020.
5' of time to be added.
Into added time we go. A home defeat which has things looking bleak for Serbia in terms of sealing a place in Euro 2020 in this Group B.
Carvalho into the book.
Joao Felix on the ball but one step over too many from the Atleti striker
Portugal back to the short pass possession football which frustrates the home side.
Jovic-Milivojevic (change for Serbia)
Off Fernandes-Mouthino on
A bullet from the Fulham striker to offer a glimmer of home for the home side.
Moutinho poised to make an entrance for Portugal.
Katai-Kostic (change for Serbia)
The goal has silenced the Red Star stadium as a section of the home fans have had a enough and leave the ground.
The Juve striker appeared to be slightly offside when he recieved the ball from Silva.
Goooooooooooooooooool Silva finds Cristiano who dinks past the Eibar keeper to restore the two goal advangate.
Serbia probe but Portugal comfortable in defending and clearing the danger with composure.
Less than 15' for the Serbian side to claw their way back into the game.
Portugal doing the best to kill the game with long spells of monotonous passing which simply frustrates the opposition.
Mitrovic is involved in everything for Serbian in the Portugal box. A real handful for the men in white.
Another appeal for Serbia as Tadic takes a theatrical dive in the box. Once again the Turkish official is having nothing of it.
The former Benfica man earning just his second cap for his national side.
- 35% 64%
- 14% 85%
- 19% 80%
- 35% 64%
- 62% 37%
- 82% 17%
- 32% 67%
- 43% 56%
- 68% 31%
- 50% 50%
- 45% 54%
- 32% 67%
- 33% 66%
Joao Felix on for Guedes. What can the Atletico man deliver in Belgrade?
Ljajic rifles a long range effort and Rui Patricio tips over. The fans now find their voice with Serbia with their tails up.
Great goal for the neutral fan but questions to be asked about the Portugal defending
Gooooooooooooooooool. Serbia pull one back. Milenkovic steals in unmarked to nod home the Serbian corner
We're back underway after the Man City defender replaces Semedo. The fans at the Marakana have been errily silent for a Serbian crowd.
Ljajic on for Lazovic (Serbia)
Portugal: Semedo off/Cancelo on
Worrying for Barça fans as Kolarov says sorry. The tangle between both players looked innocuous at the time but the stretcher is on to take the Portugal defender from the pitch.
The Barça player looks to be in trouble as the Portugal medical attned to the player.
Semedo injured with play held up.
Portugal cruising now, playing keep-ball and making Serbia chase shadows
Delightful left footed effort which leaves Dmitrovic with no chance .... a FIFA Play station strike !
The home fans also seem restless as Portugal dominate the action in the second 45'
The pace of the game seems to have dropped somwhat in this second half.
Fine link up play again from the side in white, CR7, Fernandes and Silva all involved.
Milivojevic almost draws Serbia level with a fine outside of the boot effoprt which almost causes trouble for Rui Patricio.
CR7 steps up, right footed and zips the ball inches wide of the Serbian post.
Perfect range for the Juventus man
The Juventus player was quiet in the first half just as he earns a dabngerious free kick for his side.
Cristiano in action, whistles ring out as the Madeira born forward is on the ball. The Juve striker almost silences the Belgrade crowd with an exquisite right footed effort.
So, Portugal lead in Belgrade with the men in white set to get us underway. No changes at the break.
The teams make their way back on to the pitch at the home of Serbian giants Red Star Belgrade. The former European champions are back in this season's Champions League after making their way through the qualifying groups.
This is how the 'live' Group B table looks
Luxembourg-Portugal and Lithuania-Serbia are next Tuesday's games with table topping Ukraine on a break in the five team group
Will we see Milinkovic-Savic or Jovic for the home side in the second half? A defeat would be a major blow for the Balkan nations Euro 2020 aspirations.
A short break in Belgrade and we´ll be back to see if the home side can turn things around.
The half time whistle sounds in Belgrade as Portugal go in at the break with a 0-1 lead they barely deserve.
Mitrovic fouls as he climbs. One minute of time to be added.
Once again, Serbia cut open the Portugal right flank working the ball into danger zone as Portugal clear for a corner.
Into the final min. of normal time.
Very cruel on the home side with the goal coming just as Serbia were starting to shade proceedings.
Dmitrovic collides with his own defender and the ball falls to the Betis man who fires into an empty net.
Fernandes has along range drive....ambitious to say the least and high and wide.
The Benfica man is awarded a card for his trouble.
Play held up as Dias fouls Lazovic.
Great play from Serbia as as Kolarov drives wide. The Serbian side now on top having decided to take the game to the current Euro holders.
Lazovic finds Mitoivic but just as the Fulham player was poised to launch himself at the ball, Rui Patricio intervenes. The play was ultimately ruled out for offside, Much better from Serbia now.
Portugal's outstanding fixtures in the Group B qualifying stage:
Mitrovic calling for a handball but the Turkish official waves play on. Don´t forget there no VAR in these Euro 2020 qualifying games.
Into the last 15' we go.... A draw really suits neither side. Both Portugal and Serbia have to travel to Ukraine which will be far from an easy task.
Serbia pulling themselves back into the action
Possession on the half hour mark:
Portugal go close with great build up play from Cristiano and Bernardo Silva.
Mitrovic blazes a shot-cross which sees Rui Patricio flapping as the ball zips past his goalmouth. Serbia slowly but surely creeping into the game now playing with more ambition.
Nice work from Lazovic on the right with the Verona player firing across a teasing cross which Rui Patricio latches onto first.
Portugal's final ball the problem with some fine build up play ultimately coming to nothing with final wayward passes
Portugal playing the bulk of the football but yet lacking the creativity to find away through the well disciplined and organised Serbian defence.
Still only one clear cut chance tonight so far with the early Mitrovic effort. The rhythm of the game now interrupted with niggly fouls.
Possession: 25-75 (SER-POR)
Ruben Dias fouls Mitrovic to earn the home side a dangerous free kick. Poor delivery and straight into the hands of Rui Patricio.
Guedes with an ambitious effort but drives his effort high and wide. Serbia happy to sit deep and hit on the counter.
Cristiano under heavy surveileance from the men in red tonight, foulded yet again by the Serrbian rear guard.
Maksimovic clatters into Cristiano and is awarded a card for the rigouros challenge.
The Portugal side dominating early proceedings with the best change of the night however falling to Serbia.
Eibar keeper Dmitrovic called into action for the first time of the noght with a solid punch from the Serbian stopper.
Fernandes to take a free kick as Carvalho is fouled. Poor deliver from the Sporting man.
Cristiano touches the ball for the first time of the night and a barrage of boos greet the striker.
Mitrovic with the first chance of the night after neat build up play from the home side. The Fulham player strikes the ball straight at Rui Patricio in the Portugal goal.
Guedes on the floor after slipping, looks to be okay with the surface looking slippery after the downpour just prior to kick-off.
Off we go.... Serbia in red shirts, Portugal in their change strip of all white.
All set in Belgrade. Plenty of empty seats in the ground but a more than respectable attendance for this key Euro 2020 qualifuer.
Cüneyt Çakır (Turkey) is tonight's match official.
Portugal with just two games played to date in Group B. A 1-1 draw at home to tonight's opponents in Serbia and a home 0-0 against group topping Ukraine. A win tonight, whilst not essential would boost Fernando Santos' mens cnahces in securing a qualifying sport for Euro 2020.
A wet evening ahead in Belgrade with rain forecast in the capital.
- 1 Rui Patrício
- 6 Fonte
- 4 Rúben Dias
- 2 Nelson Semedo
- 5 Raphael Guerreiro
- 14 William Carvalho
- 10 Bernardo Silva
- 11 Bruno Fernandes
- 13 Danilo Pereira
- 7 Cristiano
- 17 Gonçalo Guedes
- 1 Dmitrovic
- 5 Nastasic
- 11 Kolarov
- 19 Maksimovic
- 18 Nikola Milenkovic
- 14 Darko Lazovic
- 17 Filip Kostic
- 21 Matic
- 10 Tadic
- 4 Milivojevic
- 9 Mitrovic
This is how Group B looks going into tonight's game:
Ukraine consolidated their grip at the top of Group B today with a 0-3 win away to Lithuania. Defeat for either Serbia or Portugal would be a major set back for aspirations to qualify automatically for Euro 2020.
The first line up for new Serbian boss Ljubisa Tumbakovi sees Toni Rukavina lose out at right back with Nikola Milenkovic taking his place.
So no Joao Felix for Portugal tonight in Belgrade as Ronadlo and Guedes start for Fernado Santos in Belgrade as they opt for a 4-3-1-2 formation.
Serbia XI vs Portugal: Dmitrovic, Maksimovic, Milenkovic, Nastasic, Kolarov, Matic, Milivojevic, Lazovic, Kostic, Tadic, Mitrovic
Kick-off in the Serbian capital is at 20:45 CEST.
Hello and welcome to our live of the Group Euro 2020 qualifier from Belgrade as Serbia face Portugal.